Friday, August 31, 2012

Meier's Wonderful Clock

Louis Meier was the builder and owner of this clock. Construction was begun in 1892 and finished in 1904. The clock was displayed at Meier's jewelry store and at some fairs. This postcard is from the Century of Progress Exposition in Chicago, where Meier's Wonderful Clock was displayed in 1934.

The clock's frame is made of carved mahogany. It is 14 ft. high, 7 ft. wide, and weighs 2500 pounds. The clock was driven by weights. It has small dials running in harmony with the master clock that show the time in thirteen principal cities throughout the world. The moon's phases are shown by an illuminated sphere at the top that revolves once in 29 days and 8 hours. A calendar that changes automatically shows the date.

A globe on the lower part of the clock represents the earth and revolves in 24 hours. Miniature figures, accompanied by music and representing men of different nations, marched out around the globe every five minutes. Chimes were rung every quarter hour by characters representing childhood, youth, manhood, and old age. Hours were struck by Father Time.

The clock was not seen for many years, but was eventually donated by the family to the Detroit Historical Museum and was restored.

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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Minnesota State Fair - Postcard Exhibits

I always like to look at the postcard displays in the Creative Activities Building at the Minnesota State Fair. I like to photograph them too, although the low light and glass display cases make it impossible to get good photos. Most of the displays were in the contraption with hinged frames shown above. Some were in large display cases with other kinds of items.

The exhibits are judged and first through fourth place ribbons are awarded. The majority of the displays received a ribbon. The first and second place displays are shown here.

My favorite display was the one with handmade collages illustrating various quilt patterns. This one was very creative and especially appropriate as an example of a creative activity.

Untitled Quilt Pattern Collages

The display of Krampus postcards won the Sweepstakes Award. Krampus was described as a tall devil that accompanies Saint Nicholas in some parts of Europe. He is a scary creature that has the job of punishing bad children by swatting them with his switches. He carries extra bad children are carried off to Hell.

Christmas Postcards Featuring Krampus

Loring park is on the edge of downtown Minneapolis. It was originally called Central Park. It was renamed in honor of Charles Morgridge Loring, a Supreme Court Justice who was the first president of the Minneapolis Board of Park Commissioners.

Loring Park - Minneapolis Central Park

Pastime Punch-out Postcards is a set of Tucks Post Cards called "Butterflies on the Wing." It is shown with its original package.

Pastime Punch-out Postcards

Biltmore House and Gardens is in Biltmore, North Carolina.

Biltmore House & Gardens

"For the Love of Linens" shows a variety of linen postcards. Its title is made up of letters like those on large letter linen postcards.

For the Love of Linens

The World's Columbian Exposition was held in 1893 in Chicago. These cards are an Official Souvenir set of ten U. S. postal cards.

1893 Chicago World's Columbian Exposition

The Swedish Hospital - Minneapolis

Nurses of Many Countries

"Is It Animal, Vegetabe, or Mineral?" has postcards made of different materials or with attachments of different materials. Some of the materials are leather, wood, sponge, aluminum, and copper.

Is It Animal, Vegetabe, or Mineral?

MSP - Charles Lindbergh Terminal

Old Twin Cities Trolleys

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Minnesota State Fair - Let's Go!

This postcard shows the streetcar terminal at the Minnesota State Fair, with some fair buildings in the background. Early twentieth-century city dwellers were likely to take a streetcar to the fair. Out of town visitors could take special trains run by Great Northern and Northern Pacific directly to the fairgrounds.

The emblem below appears on the back of this postcard. Before World I, the fair opened on Labor Day and ran for six days. In 1919, the fair was lengthened to eight days and began on the Saturday before Labor Day. In 1939, the fair expanded to ten days and ended on Labor Day. The length of the fair increased to eleven days in 1972 and twelve days in 1975.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Minnesota State Fair - Grand Stand and Paddock

This postcard of the Minnesota State Fair grandstand was used in 1909. It shows the old wooden grandstand, which was replaced by a newer concrete and steel grandstand in 1909. The field and surrounding track could be easily adapted for many different types of events.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Remembering Neil Armstrong -- 1930-2012

The postcard above shows the Apollo 11 astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin E. Aldrin watching as the space vehicle scheduled to carry them to the moon was positioned on the launch pad. Apollo 11 was the spaceflight which landed the first humans, Americans Armstrong and Aldrin, on the Moon on July 20, 1969. Armstrong was the first to step onto the lunar surface. Collins remained alone in lunar orbit until they returned from the surface. All three astronauts returned to Earth safely after travelling in space for 8 days. (Sources: NASA photo; Wikipedia)

The next postcard shows Neil Armstrong Home Coming Day at Wapakoneta, Ohio, September 6, 1969. Armstrong is traversing the parade route in his home town, and greeting his fellow townsmen.

Below is an enlarged detail from the parade postcard.

The last postcard shows the sign erected in Wapakoneta to honor Armstrong. The sign was erected when Armstrong became the first civilian astronaut, with an addition made after he became the first man to step on the moon.

Neil Armstrong was born August 5, 1930 in Wapakoneta, Ohio. He died August 25, 2012.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Waikiki Motel - Anaheim, California

The Waikiki Motel sounds like it should have been in Hawaii, but it was actually in Anaheim, California, right next door to Disneyland. The room shown on this postcard would have been a nice place to stay on a honeymoon or anniversary.

This postcard has 1959 penciled on the back, and I assume that was the date of the postcard or when someone was there. This motel is no longer there. Its ephemera is popular with"tiki" collectors, and you can see more of the motel's postcards and souvenirs on the Tiki Central and Critiki websites.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Greyhound Buses - Indianapolis, Indiana

There are a lot of buses shown on this postcard of the Indianapolis Greyhound Station. There are also some smaller vehicles in the same colors.

This station was originally a "traction terminal" opened in 1904 for interurban train service (transpressnz blog has a postcard with a similar view of the traction terminal). The station was later converted into a Bus Station. The train shed was torn down in 1968, and the neighboring office building was demolished in 1972 (source: flickr).

Friday, August 17, 2012

Blatchford's Calf Meal

Blatchford's Calf Meal, the subject of this 1911 advertising postcard, was a milk substitute used for feeding young calves. The company claimed that it was "richer than milk at a third of the cost."

The introduction to Sepia Saturday 139 mentioned that one of the uses of bones was in animal feed. In the past, cattle feed might have contained some animal bone meal. I don't know whether bone meal was included in calf meal. Many countries now prohibit the feeding of meat and bone meal to cattle because it is thought to have been responsible for the spread of mad cow disease.

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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

El Capitan Train

The Santa Fe Railway's El Capitan began service in 1938, operating on the Santa Fe main line from Chicago to Los Angeles on the same fast schedule as the railroad's premier Pullman Super Chief.

The following description is printed on the back of this postcard:
This Santa Fe day-saving dollar-saving transcontinental streamlined train is dedicated entirely to the service of chair-car passengers. It makes the 2227-mile journey between Chicago and Los Angeles twice-weekly as swiftly as the fastest luxury streamliners--in just 39-3/4 hours. El Capitan, behind a 3600 H.P. Diesel-electric locomotive, capable of 120 miles an hour, carries 6 or more ultra-modern air-conditioned lightweight streamlined stainless steel cars--including beautifully appointed 52-seat chair cars, with spacious dressing rooms; a modern club-chair car; and a unique Fred Harvey lunch counter-dining car.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Paul Bunyan's Playground -- Bemidji, Minnesota

The following description is on the back of this postcard:
The lake front at Bemidji offers tourists a wide variety of activities. Seaplanes and speed boat rides, a trip on the Dixie Belle, a replica of an old time Mississippi River paddle wheel steamboat, and a view of the famous Paul Bunyan and Babe, the Blue Ox statues which stand 18 feet high. These statues are one of the six most widely photographed objects in America.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Dear Old England

Although this postcard is the WWI era, the caption seems to sum up the British feelings about the London Olympics:
To make dear old England happy and great,
The glad day of victory we hopefully wait.

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Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Go For The Gold

Here are two postcards from the 1984 Summer Olympics that were held in Los Angeles, California.

The Olympic logo, shown on the first postcard, combined a star in motion with the Olympic Rings. The star portrayed the speed and spirit of competition. The Rings represent the union of the five continents, universal brotherhood, and the meeting of athletes from all over the world in a spirit of friendship and fair competition.

The official Mascot of the 1984 Summer Olympics, Sam the Olympic Eagle, is shown on the second card. The mascot expressed the cheerful optimism of the Olympic spirit. As an eagle, Sam also embodied the ideals of the Olympic motto: "Citius, Altius, Fortius" swifter, higher, stronger.

Santa Fe "Super Chief" - Albuquerque, New Mexico

A "crack streamline train" of the Santa Fe Railway, in front of the Albuquerque depot and Alvarado Hotel, ready to continue its journey from Chicago to Los Angeles.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Mexico 1968 Olympics

The 1968 Summer Olympics were held in Mexico City. The caption on this postcard is Aztec Post Racer.

The graphics on this postcard are not the official ones. The official logo and graphics were more modern in style. The logo had elements of both traditional Mexican art and 1960s op-art. See Olympic Games Design from 1968 Mexico City for examples of the official graphics and their use.

Official 1968 Mexico Olympics Logo

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Post From London

The picture on this postcard is labeled London Types: The Postman. There is a small folder of 12 London views attached to the front of the postcard. When the folder is opened, the views fold out.

These are the views inside the folder: Whitehall, Tower Bridge, London Bridge, Trafalgar Square, Tower & Tower Bridge, St. Paul's Cathedral, Old Houses, Houses of Parliament, Traffic Duty at Ludgate Circus, Exchange & Bank, Cheapside, Looking E., and Queen Victoria Memorial.

The back of the postcard has instructions about the amount of postage needed with and without a written message. To get the lower rate, "Post Card" had be crossed out and Book Post marked in place of "Post Card."

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